Vigil held for Oakland's youngest homicide victim this year

- Police say he's the youngest victim of homicide in Oakland this year. 13-year-old eighth grader Anibal Andres Ramirez had just finished dinner with his family before he was shot and killed last Tuesday in East Oakland. 

Authorities say they're still looking for the gunman in a story that received little attention when it happened because of the Northern California fire coverage. 

Eight days later, a vigil was held for the boy on Seminary Avenue. His Guatemalan family speaks very little English and are trying to move forward after the unthinkable has happened. 

Community members showed up to to console the grieving mother. The boy had only been in the country a year. 

Last Tuesday, the boy received a text at 9:51 p.m. to meet a friend on the 2600 block of Seminary Ave., where he was shot multiple times. 

His body was found slumped on the bench where candles burned in his memory at the vigil and his picture was taped on a wall. 

"They are hardly able to function because the thought of losing their child; it's making them crazy. We can't even talk to them without them crying," said Daryle Allums with the group, Stop Killing Our Children.

"I just heard the gunshots and once we came out, the cops were here and we just saw his body laying there. They haven't released why. No reason," said Anna Hernandez, a family friend. 

Ramirez was pronounced dead at the scene. The community says it's senseless. 

About a half mile away from the scene of the shooting, Ramirez attended Frick Impact Academy where grief counselors have been talking to students. His teachers also came to the vigil. Many at the school are still trying to cope.

"I think everyone's in shock. He was so young he was very quiet. He was a good kid. I don't think anyone expected this to happen. It's kind of unreal," said Sharde Thomas Ezelo, a teacher at Bret Harte Middle School. 

There were also questions as to why the young teen was out at night on what some locals call a dangerous corner. 

Both of Ramirez' parents are currently out of work and the vigil doubled as a fundraiser. 

Oakland Police Department continue to search for the shooters and answers to their questions, but a teacher in her grief worries about the next generation of her students. 

"I hope for the next kids I get into my classroom and the kids after that, that they learn this culture is different but it's also similar and they have to be aware of what's going on right now in Oakland," said Ezelo. 

Police say they are looking for two male suspects in the case and a motive in the child's death. 

Anibal was one of four children. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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